Historic Climate Liability Case In Colorado Against Exxon And Suncor

| Resist!

Washington, D.C.–Today, the United States Court of Appeals Tenth Circuit ruled that a case launched by Boulder County, San Miguel County, and the City of Boulder will proceed in state, rather than federal court. Marco Simons, General Counsel of EarthRights International, which is representing the municipalities in the case, issued the following statement in response: 

“We applaud today’s decision as an important step forward in our lawsuit against Suncor and Exxon. Federal courts have consistently ruled that these climate cases belong in state courts — which makes sense because these cases are about harms experienced at the local level. The Colorado state court has already begun considering this case, and today’s ruling means that the case will not be moved to federal court as the oil companies would prefer.

“Colorado is one of the top fossil fuel producing states in the U.S. The oil and gas industry has spent millions of dollars over the past several decades on lobbying and deceptive advertising to spread its destructive message there and to block meaningful climate action. This has led to rampant fossil fuel extraction that is connected to more air pollution, increased risk of wildfires and droughts, and reduced snowpack. These clear indicators of climate change are also undermining public health, local economies, and essential infrastructure systems like roads. 

“Our clients have a responsibility to their constituents to prepare for the rising costs associated with the changing climate. This lawsuit is an important effort to help reduce the financial burden of the climate crisis on Colorado communities, who now must invest considerable resources in cleaning up the fossil fuel industry’s mess. 

“But Exxon and Suncor are disproportionately responsible for the crisis that our clients now face. Their reckless behavior has caused part of the damages that these communities are contending with and they should be held accountable for those damages. The Boulder County District Court held a hearing on this case on June 1, and we look forward to its pending decision on whether the case can proceed towards trial.” 

  • Jeff

    The oil and gas industry has spent millions of dollars over the
    past several decades on lobbying and deceptive advertising to spread its
    destructive message there and to block meaningful climate action. This
    has led to rampant fossil fuel extraction that is connected to more air
    pollution, increased risk of wildfires and droughts, and reduced
    snowpack. These clear indicators of climate change are also undermining
    public health, local economies, and essential infrastructure systems
    like roads.

    Roads artificial infrastructure that allows environmentally harmful activities are part of the problem, moron. Statements like this from people who are pretending to do something about climate change while actually doing nothing make me think that there’s no hope.

  • Nylene13

    Your point might be better taken if you did not call the author a moron.
    I seriously doubt you live your life without ever using a road.

  • Jeff

    I have zero tolerance for this kind of childish, hypocritical crap. It’s not about whether I or anyone else uses roads. As I’ve told you many times, it’s about this entire society and the way it’s structured; that’s what needs to change, and radically so. My problem is that this person is pretending to advocate for substantial action regarding global warming/climate change, while complaining that the problem undermines some of the things that cause the problem. Utterly ridiculous, though very common.

  • Nylene13

    I think it would serve you purpose better if you explained just what you think needs to change, and how.

    Calling someone a Moron does not help your cause, especially when they are basically on your side.

  • mwildfire

    and little that you say will persuade anyone when your sneering tone gets everyone’s back up, not just the person you call a moron. It discredits you.

  • Jeff

    These phony climate activists and advocates are in some ways even worse than the deniers, because they convince people that they’re doing something when they in fact are not. I agree that instead of calling whoever said this a moron maybe I should have articulated more, but how long are we supposed to put up with this BS? Sorry, but I’m at the point of outrage. The movie Planet of the Humans hit the nail on the head, but these hypocrites and liars continue their BS, while most of the public has their heads up their you-know-what, wanting to have their cake (unnatural destructive lifestyles) and eat it too (fixing global warming/climate change).

    What needs to change? We need to move away from living industrially until we eventually eliminate doing so. Roads and industrial infrastructure need to be eliminated, not complained that they’re being undermined. Sheesh!

  • Nylene13

    “We need to move away from living industrially”.
    Now that is a good point.

    How do we begin to do this?

    Clearly the Rich Owned Capitalist Society is NOT interested in doing this.

    So what do we do about them? And how do we do it?

    And do we have enough time for “eventually”?

    Many Scientists are saying it is already too late.

    Take Fukushima. With Fukushima’s rate of radiation that is poring into the ocean INCREASING….to where it has already reached ALL CORNERS of the Pacific Ocean…what are we going to do about that?
    Scientists have No Idea how to stop it.

    And that is just one example.

  • Jeff

    You’re correct that most people want more destructive conveniences, not fewer. The only solution is a major mental and spiritual evolution of humans. I don’t know how to accomplish this, nor have I read or heard anyone else who does. (When I began studying and practicing Eastern spirituality decades ago in my youth and expressed frustration with the large majority of people for not wanting to move in this direction, my teacher said, “They’ll come when they are ready.” While true, it doesn’t address this problem.) I think that teaching fundamental Buddhism (what The Buddha taught, not BS like reincarnation) and having kids meditate daily in schools would be a good step in the right direction, but that’s the only idea I have here.

    As to how much time the Earth has for humans to stop attacking it and all that lives here: All we can do is to do what we can, and let the chips fall where they may. You either give up and continue your harmful lifestyle with no changes, or you make at least some effort. Realistic expectations could hardly be worse or lower, but never give up hope. If you keep trying you never know what might happen, despite how unlikely it seems (I learned that lesson from sports). At the very least you’ll know that you did what you could when you die, and at best you might be part of the great change that’s needed, though it wouldn’t happen until far into the future.

  • Nylene13

    It is almost midnight, I am tired.

    I will reply to you tomorrow.

    Goodnight.